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End of Watch: Red Bulls announce signing of Kaku

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It’s finally over.

The long-awaited announcement of the signing of Alejandro ‘Kaku’ Romero Gamarra came on Friday as the New York Red Bulls made the transfer official. While the details of the transfer are undisclosed, Kaku has signed as the first Young Designated Player in club history.

Kaku joins from Argentine club Huracan, where he had been a member of the first team since 2013. He replaces fellow Argentine Designated Player Gonzalo Veron on the roster and will be expected to help replace the production of assist leader and playmaker Sacha Kljestan in midfield.

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“We are very pleased to reach an agreement with all parties and complete this deal,” sporting director Denis Hamlett said in a statement. “When we identified Kaku, he quickly became our top off-season target. He fits the profile of the player we are looking for: highly skilled, creative, and hard-working. During our discussions, we realized that we are adding a good player and great young man to our team. We look forward to seeing him continue to grow as part of the New York Red Bulls.”

The signing ends a months-long saga in which there were reports of multiple agreements to bring Kaku to New York, only for it to fall through.

Last December, Huracan posted that the Red Bulls and it had agreed on a $6.25 million transfer fee for Kaku, but the deal was held up for various reasons until Friday.

The Argentine youth international has been given the No. 10 shirt.

There is joy in Harrison, N.J. today. Mighty Red Bulls completed the deal.

Orlando City confirms trade with Red Bulls for Kljestan

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Orlando City has found its new playmaker.

After reports of a deal on Tuesday, Orlando City confirmed on Wednesday that it has acquired veteran attacking midfielder Sacha Kljestan and $150,000 in target allocation money from the New York Red Bulls in exchange for Carlos Rivas and Tommy Redding.

In the press release from OCSC, Kljestan was not referred to as a Designated Player, perhaps hinting that the club used some TAM to pay down his contract.

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“We are thrilled to bring Sacha to Orlando,” Lions general manager Niki Budalic said in a statement. “His ability to see the field and make the final pass will be huge assets for us. But more than that – he’s a winner. He’s won everywhere he’s gone, and we look forward to that continuing here.”

Kljestan has proved to be the best assist-man in the league since returning to MLS in 2015, recording 51 dimes in 97 matches for the Red Bulls.

It’s a big loss for the Red Bulls as they lose their captain for the second-straight year, and while they bring in Rivas and Redding, both have yet to impress at this level. But at Kljestan’s age of 32, the Red Bulls may have wanted to cash in on the veteran while his value is still high.